Lazio and AS Roma featured in a new edition of the Derby della Capitale and the game looked quite exciting, at least on paper. However, the match itself fell short to even the least optimistic expectations, and both sides ended settling for scoreless draw that kept them in third and fourth place in the Serie A standings, respectively. Roma deserved better luck and should probably escaped with the three points, but their lack of accuracy in the final meters doomed their chances to get a good result.
Neither side looked overly dominant during the first few minutes, and both struggled to get things going in the attacking end. Roma always had an edge, though, but their first scoring opportunity came in the 28th minute thanks to Bruno Peres. The Brazilian right-back smashed the left post when Thomas Strakosha had nothing to do on the sequence. Unfortunately, that was the lone highlight of the first half. Lazio spent most of the initial 45 minutes getting caught offside, while Roma had more possession but couldn’t reflect it on the scoreline.
Things didn’t change much in the second half. Roma continued to look like the better side, but they modified their approach and started to generate far more chances thanks to the entrance of Cengiz Under. Lazio, on the other hand, looked sluggish on the attacking end, as the entrances of Jordan Lukaku and Luis Alberto did not change the team’s scenery too much. It seemed the game was going to end without any sort of controversy, but Lazio’s Stefan Radu had other plans. The Romanian centre-back was sent off in the 80th minute, which basically meant that Lazio needed to hold on to the result with one less player in the final minutes.
They got the job done, but there is no question they suffered a great deal on stoppage time. In fact, Edin Dzeko smashed the crossbar with a header in the 91st minute, and the Bosnian striker came inches away from breaking the deadlock one minute later. By that time, Lazio simply wanted to hold on to the result in order to maintain themselves in third place of the standings. They accomplished it, but their performance was far worse than anyone would have expected.
The same can’t be said for Roma, though. Il Giallorossi looked as good as they looked earlier this week against FC Barcelona, but lacked accuracy in the final third. But there is no question they are moving in the right direction right now.
Both teams will continue their path to claim a UEFA Champions Leagur berth next season in only a few more days. Roma will host Genoa, while Lazio will visit a red-hot Fiorentina side. Both games will be played next Wednesday at 19:45 BST.
Lazio: Strakosha (7); Luis Felipe (6), de Vrij (6), Radu (5); Marusic (5), Parolo (6), Leiva (6), Milinkovic-Savic (5), Lulic (5) (Lukaku (5), 59′); Felipe Anderson (7) (Luis Alberto (6), 59′); Immobile (5) (Bastos (-), 82′)
AS Roma: Alisson (6); Fazio (6), Manolas (5) (Florenzi (-), 74′), Juan Jesus (7); Bruno Peres (5) (El Shaarawy (-), 82′), Strootman (6), De Rossi (6), Kolarov (5); Schick (5) (Under (6), 55′), Nainggolan (6); Dzeko (7)
Referee: Paolo Silvio Mazzoleni
Yellow Cards: Leiva, Luis Felipe (LAZ); Juan Jesus, Strootman (ROM)
Red Cards: Radu (LAZ)
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